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Meanings of bullying in the Greek context: An exploration of the meanings of bullying from the perspectives and experiences of 11-12 yr old pupils attending a primary school in Greece.

Nika, Varvara. 2010. Meanings of bullying in the Greek context: An exploration of the meanings of bullying from the perspectives and experiences of 11-12 yr old pupils attending a primary school in Greece. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.

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Abstract

The phenomenon of bullying has been recognized as a reality within Greek schools however, the underlying concept seems to be still enveloped by ambiguity and confusion. The present piece of qualitative research aims to offer insights into the meanings that bullying is assigned within the Greek context. Throughout the fieldwork, conducted in a primary school in southwest Greece, thirty one 11-12 year old pupils offered their perspectives on school bullying. Moreover, they wrote and talked about their related experiences. The children's reports indicate that reaching a consensus of what constitutes a bullying act is unrealistic when real life incidents are concerned. The explanations offered by the children link bullying to a network of personal, socio-cultural, and organizational factors, thus confirming the multi-causal nature of the phenomenon. However, all of them shared the view that bullying is provoked by a deserving victim who transgresses the existing socio-cultural norms. On the other hand, the behaviour of the bullies was understood as conforming to the demands of the existing socio-cultural framework, rather than expressing feelings of malice and hostility. The pupils' responses to bullying seem to constitute their struggle to safeguard desirable social identities, rather than to tackle the phenomenon itself. Additionally, this study highlights the power of the Greek terminology to mask bullying by reproducing existing socio-cultural meanings and practices, and discusses the related implications of this. The importance of language as a social means through which personal goals are achieved is emphasized. This is because through the rationales, excuses, and justifications offered by the pupils, meanings of bullying can be normalized so as to fit Greek socio-cultural requests. The findings of the present study stress that culture and context should not be overlooked when anti-bullying school programs are designed.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
ISBN: 9781303224539
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 08 Jan 2014 16:11
URI: http://orca-mwe.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/55176

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